This one was largely inspired by Sharon Needles, my nightmare girl; her lyric is used for the title. The story came from a vision I had of a drag queen using the disco ball in a new way, taking the iconic object and making it truly come to life. If the disco ball did come to life, what would it offer us? It features my obsession with death and the continuing plague of homophobia still poisoning our world.
So this is me, all rules gone, just having fun and writing for the love of the craft and for the love of being a weirdo.
I’m Your Disco Ball
A mirrored ball, tethered to the roof for all to see. Forever unchanging the disco ball had been there for every party, the centrepiece of the club and a friend to all to cross the threshold. The marker to indicate the shift away from mundane reality into a more beautiful fantasy, full of opportunities for love. The ornament had served as a witness to every heartbreak, observing every victory with its indifferent eye. The solid sphere carried no secrets, only promising salvation to each and every patron of the gay bar.
Many a visitor to Niche would glance up and marvel at the disco ball as something magical: nothing more than a crazy notion, until early one morning when the inanimate object revealed itself to be more than any could have imagined. The doors were locked and the dance floor empty as the sun rose on the outside world, the beginning of another pointless day for the millions of worker drones.
Suddenly the ball began to swing on its cable, as if whipped up in a violent wind. It spun at an incredible speed as it continued on its pendulum trajectory. The tiled surface had begun to move, expanding and contracting in the style of human lungs. Its perfectly round shape was compromised, a hand pushing against the rubber-like interior. It stretched beyond what could have been believed, transforming into something totally new.
Amongst this flurry of activity a slit appeared, the lines of mirrors pulling away from each other to reveal something similar to a mouth. Seconds later a form was ejected from within the ball. The figure went flying through the air of the abandoned club, crashing and sliding along the ground. With this intruder now removed the disco ball returned to normal. Still and innocent, no one would ever know of the odd event.
No one but the person spit from the ball. The figure remained on the ground, its ruined body curled into the defenceless foetal position. A horrid and inhuman scream came from this person, trembling in the shock of what had just taken place. Yelling and crying without the sense to stop. The desperate noise filled the room, but nobody was coming to its rescue.
This was all the person could think of to do, until eventually its voice began to die. The scream was reduced to a croak and it had to find something new to do, some other solution.
Without any grace it got to its feet. This creature had the elongated figure of a male, as well as the features and delicateness of a female. A short dress covered his thin frame, it was bridal white in colour. Atop his head was long jet black hair, slightly ruffled from his landing. He swayed on his feet, which were strapped into low heels. A single run in his dark pantyhose revealed a muscular leg.
He wrapped his arms around his stomach and lurched forward. He groaned and retched, thick black liquid flying from his mouth. After being beaten to death he was still bleeding internally, the blood black and rotting inside of him. He wiped his mouth clean on his elbow-high gloves and waited for the world to stop spinning all around him.
Two days ago he had been a boy celebrating his twenty-first birthday. A shy kid he’d had only a couple of close friends, who had taken him out to celebrate this milestone. Having only recently fully come out of the closet he had been over-joyed for his first visit to a gay club. This was something he had always waited for, despite keeping the desire secret. The night had been amazing, fulfilling all of his dreams. He had finally felt liberated from all of the bullying and the disapproving looks from his father.
Life hadn’t stayed sweet for very long. They had poured out of the club and began searching for a club, a way to get their drunken asses out of here. His friends lived in the opposite direction to him, leaving him alone to wait for his own cab. He had been an easy target for the group of heterosexuals. These males had nothing better to do with their Saturday night than infect the world with their hatred. They had set upon him, easily overpowering him. He had never been taught how to fight, his pleas ignored as they shouted homophobic slurs. They had taken turns until there was nothing left in him. Left on the sidewalk the world had gone black; there was no white light to greet him, nothing but pain.
Black tears fell down his cheeks as he recalled the unbelievable agony of death. Their fear had become his fear, seeping into his bones and trapping him. In this sense it had been a relief to die and gain that release from the pain.
But now he was back, back somehow. He would never have believed such a thing, if not for how real and tangible the world around him was. He could hear the sound of his kitten heels scraping across the floor, accompanied by his own shaky breathing. Every detail of the club was true to memory – from the disco ball to the leather chairs propped up around the circumference of the dance floor.
Another aspect of the club returned to mind, its reputation. There were stories of it being a haunted house, a club filled with paranormal activity. More than one owner found dead on the dance floor, under suspicious circumstances. A series of cleaners killing themselves in the building, one very recently too. Tales from patrons telling of seeing ghosts, sharing their experiences on social media. Nothing could ever be proved, but people loved to talk. He had shrugged it off like many others, finding it interesting, but not believing a word of it until now.
When visiting the club he had felt his spirit at home, a connection which had travelled deeper than he had acknowledged. His essence had left the mortal world and attached itself to this supernatural magnet. Niche wasn’t done with him yet, he still had business in this realm.
He was very suddenly not alone. He heard a door creaking open, but by the time he looked around they were already inside. At first there was only a dark fog, filling the room. Then faces began to appear, bodies materialising from the cloud. His grandparents were there, whom he hadn’t seen since their deaths during his childhood. He also recognised his favourite teacher; she had been killed in a car accident. They were joined by more deceased people from his past.
The group brought pleasant memories with them – a warm and cosy feeling to touch his cold and rotting insides. They beckoned for him and it seemed a blissful notion to go with them, to be reunited with such a great community. The idea tugged at him and he almost give in to the lure of temptation.
Until his logic reminded him that to go with them was to go with death. He had given in to death before, this time he had the strength to resist. There was a reason why he had been brought back, he was sure of it. He had been introverted for his whole life, weak and a master at avoiding any bold actions. Maybe in his afterlife he could make something count. He liked this idea better than going with the reapers. He decided to make this return worth it.
When he resisted their call they revealed their true forms. They weren’t friendly gatekeepers to hold his hand and deliver him into transcendental bliss. They were hounds to drag him to hell. Their masks dissolved, the memories fleeing and terror flying into the space. They were hideous – near-skeletal with shadows cast over their unforgiving faces, their eyes burnt red. Where there had been a nose seconds ago there was only a slight bump with two slits. Their teeth protruded from blackened gums, filed down to points. They didn’t speak anymore, when they opened their mouths growls came out, the noises of rabid and hungry dogs.
He stood his ground. He didn’t know what he was fighting for just yet, but there was something telling him that there was reason to fight. They began to float, fly and swirl around him, the fog returning to distract him. He waited for one to get close enough, feeling confident in his chances of chasing them off. He didn’t have the skill, but he had the determination and carried no intention of giving up tonight.
When a reaper tried to take a snap at him he was ready. He picked his foot up from the ground and thrust it into the creature’s face. It screeched as the point of his heel burned a hole into its waxen face. It fell out of the air, crashing to the ground as the cloud of black smoke thinned. He smiled in triumph and beckoned the others to him. Whose ass did he get to kick next?
By defeating one of their own he had angered the pack and they didn’t hesitate in rushing him. The fog choked his senses and they were all upon him. With an agility and balance he had never known he took them all down. His desire to live pushed his arm forward, allowing his punches to reach target every time. His body burned with the very satisfying sensation of revenge and he knew he wouldn’t be able to stop until they were all gone.
They were dropping like flies, the cloud thinning. This made them angry and the few remaining redoubled their effects. They started grabbing at him all at once. Fed up with this fuckery he let out a roar, letting all of his rage take flight. They scattered, the fog dissolving and the victory his.
Now alone he succumbed to his fatigue. His shoulders slumped and he let out an exhausted sigh. That hadn’t been easy, but he knew he would be ready when they came back because he knew they would be back. For now he was a winner and following that endurance he believed he deserved a bit of shut eye. He collapsed, landing in a heap on the ground under the inanimate disco ball.